Nothing short of a quick yet clever lunch with minimal time on my hands.  Peekytoe Crabmeat Tacos!  I had some napa cabbage and carrots lying around which I julienned and mixed with sour cream, hot sauce, and fresh Crabmeat.  Piled on a freshly toasted corn tortilla with a scoop of salsa and a squeeze of lime- done!  Good enough for a flashy lunch and good enough for a flashy picture!

Eric Ripert on Cooking Fish

A year or so ago, Chef Eric Ripert (one of my favorite celebrity chefs) did a sponsorship with Cuisinart and a series on cooking using only a toaster oven- ‘Get Toasted.’  Some may raise an eyebrow but I really appreciate these videos for the fundamentals of basic and simple cooking techniques.  In this episode, Chef Ripert broils a Red Snapper fillet using a technique that I have adapted when testing the doneness of fish.  In his thick French accent Eric scolds,  “If the skewer is very hot, you burn yourself and you are punished for it.”

Diver Harvested Scallops

Diver Scallop season is just starting in Maine.  Scuba divers risk extremely frigid waters for these gems.  After eating these throughout last season, I won’t eat any other Scallop besides these- it’s worth the wait.  Their sweet, crisp, creamy and elegant flesh is amazing raw or the simply seared in olive oil.

Here’s the method I use for Diver Scallops:

Pan-Seared Diver Scallops

Fish Library:  Scallops, Diver

Reflection: Mangalitsa

Today I reflected upon a past experience in Branchville, NJ about 4 years ago and a special breed of hog.  I left the entry just as it was written in a previous blog- a reflection of my writing as well.

It all started from a call from an old chef buddy of my boss’s:

“Hey I’m going down to New Jersey to bring back a Mangalitsa pig, thought you might be interested..send one of your guys”

On February 16-18 2010, I took part in Pigstock 2010 hosted at Mosefund Farm in Branchville, NJ.

 Who: A group of chefs, journalists, photographers, “foodies”

What: A 3 day Class in the slaughtereing/ preparing of organs/ and seam butchery of the Mangalitsa Pig taught by Cristoph and Isabell Wiesner of Austria.

When: February 16-18 2010

Where: Mosefund Farm Branchville, NJ

Why: Showcasing this heritage breed being introduced to America.

The Mangalitsa (aka Mangalita, Mangalica) Hog originated in Austria/ Hungary. This breed is bred and known for its extreme fat content. Basically it is a chef’s/ butcher’s dream. Pig Porn. 

Over the intense weekend I slaughtered the pigs, ate everything form the snout to tail, learned seam butchery (a method of cutting individual muscles) and met some amazing people.

I brought back 1/2 of pig. I sold the fresh meat in our store, rendered lard, and collaborated on a tasting menu my friend’s restaurant (Nudel).

This event changed my life. I can easily say that i’ve worked this hard in my field to achieve and attend such event.